Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest news items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, we look at investing in  scarce variants of the Ruger Mini-14 carbine. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

Gold Prices Holding Near 2-Month Highs After U.S. ISM Manufacturing Survey Falls In May. JWR’s Comments: Gold and silver are not for timorous investors. The price swings can be large, and they can test the patience of many folks who are not willing to commit for the long haul. Remember: Precious metals are not “money-making” investments. Rather, they represent a store of wealth, as insurance against the inevitable decline of the U.S. Dollar and other fiat currencies.

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Funds Increase Bullish Gold Positioning, Pessimistic Toward Silver

Economy & Finance:

10-year yield continues collapse on slowing growth fears, falls as low as 2.07%

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Here’s the value of $1 in each state, according to new data. Not surprisingly, the five American Redoubt States fared quite well. (It is only in Washington–and I suspect that is just western part of Washington–where a Dollar presently buys less than a Dollar’s worth.) The high cost of business overhead is difficult to escape, on the coasts.

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Steven Pearlstein: A new credit bubble gets ready to burst


At Seeking AlphaWTI crude tanks 5.5% to four-month lows on heightened trade worries

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Nick Cunningham: Shale Drillers Keep On Falling Into The Same Trap

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JP Morgan turns to machine learning for options hedging

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A reminder that this was announced back in May of 2018: Linked derivatives order book partnership ends in June 2019

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Here we are in early June of 2019 and the Nifty 50 is warming up again:  Most Active Put / Call

Forex & Cryptos:

Pound latest: Brexit ‘main focus’ as European election results come in – GBP stumbles

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May Crypto Roundup: Markets Surged 50% as Bitcoin, Ethereum, BCH, EOS and IOTA Dominated

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Facebook discusses crypto plans with CFTC

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Bitcoin Price Not Hitting Highs Unless “World On Fire”

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Ethereum (ETH) Price Showing Signs of Weakness: $250 Holds Key

Tangibles Investing:

The Ruger Mini-14 .223 carbine has been produced in such large numbers that the standard models of these  guns are now essentially a commodity. However, there are some scarce variants that are of interest to collectors. These include the GB models with factory flash hiders (primarily purchased by police departments and prisons), folding stock models (pictured), and assorted laminate stock variants. All of these are worth buying for eventual resale.

For the best resale value, it is best to find near “factory new” condition Mini-14s that are scarce variants and that are still in their factory shipping boxes.

The full auto variant is called the AC-556. A registered ($200 transfer tax) AC-556 can still sometimes be found for under $14,000, making it one of the more affordable 5.56mm Class 3 guns.

Some of the stainless steel laminate models are both collectible and practical for survivalists. If the Schumer hits the fan, you could quickly spray paint the metal parts with a blast of flat earth-toned paint, and you’d have a gun that would blend in. Some of the laminate stocks made by Ruger are predominantly green, so they’d be fine for field use “as-is.”

It is also worth mentioning that a Mini-14 is perhaps the most capable .223 carbine available in gun restrictive states like California. Just so long as you don’t add a flash hider or a folding stock, or a stock with a pistol grip, then you can skirt the bans in several states.


SurvivalBlog and its Editors are not paid investment counselors or advisers. Please see our Provisos page for our detailed disclaimers.

News Tips:

Please send your economics and investing news tips to JWR. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) These are often especially relevant, because they come from folks who particularly watch individual markets. And due to their diligence and focus, we benefit from fresh “on target” investing news. We often get the scoop on economic and investing news that is probably ignored (or reported late) by mainstream American news outlets. Thanks!


  1. Re. 10-year US treasuries yield
    This is Real News. What are the 3 largest holders of US treasuries doing?
    1. China is dumping and the ‘trade war by design’ will give them the excuse to dump treasuries in mass.
    2.Japan is dumping US treasuries.
    3. Russia dumped 84% of their holdings in the last year.
    And now the Fed is dumping theirs.

    Why? Hint: China (and Russia) are stockpiling vast amounts of physical gold.

    These are not random isolated events by opposing nations but rather orchestrated actions by nations under the same handlers. It is design “to reduce Americans under absolute Despotism’. It is the ‘Perfect Storm’ for globalists.

  2. I understand the draw of a full auto variant but for $14,000 I would be far more interested in acquiring eight good quality semiautomatic AR-15 rifles. In the event that a situation should arise where you need to use your firearms for defense then you would have more available to arm the members of your group. If instead you decide to sell them then selling them off one or two at a time is quite easy and doesn’t require an FFL intermediary. Plus this is one of those eggs in a basket examples, best to spread out the investment. Buying an ingot of gold versus buying gold coins, by the sleeve or one at a time. The coins offer the better option in my opinion. A rich man can buy whatever he pleases but the working man must plan differently.

  3. I believe the Ruger AC 556 used to be a more desirable alternative to the transferable M-16’s but not anymore. Up until recently, Ruger used to service these firearms. I am told now they will not. Because Ruger is the sole manufacture and parts manufacture of these particular weapons, where will you get service and/or parts? The three round burst and full automatic parts in these guns are fairly complicated and would not be easily duplicated.

  4. I purchased a used factory original Mini 14 folding stock about 25 years ago for about $75.00. I still have it today. Looking at completed auctions on Ebay, I would have to say this ranks up there with one of my best investments! I could easily trade this stock for a nice AR platform or something comparable.

    I have to say as well that although not as accurate as an H Bar AR15, it does most things I need to around the farm for varmint control as well as protection and it does it quite well. Based off of the M1 design, the Mini 14 will never let you down if you use factory original magazines. I have had great luck with aftermarket magazines, but since Ruger opened up the civilian market up to high capacity magazine sales, the original Ruger magazines in 20 and 30 round capacities are well within reach of the average consumer without the worry of destroying a $100 collectible. I believe my last purchase of the factory 30rnd original magazines were somewhere in the neighborhood of $20 each on sale. They are still more expensive than AR magazines, but they are an all steel body too.

    I’ll always appreciate my Mini in its reliability, simplicity, and in its traditional design.

  5. The GB actually stands for Government Barrel, hence the bayonet lug and flash hider. That’s the only difference between a “regular” Mini and a GB. This was all WAY before the Ranch rifle era.

  6. Minis throw brass a million miles away, and are not to kind to it either. If you reload, you will not appreciate the mini.

    I had a ranch rifle about 15 years ago, It would do about 2-3 moa, and was very reliable with aftermarket mags. I traded it for a reloading press and dies, and bought an AR and never looked back.

  7. My Mini is a tackdriver with a prototype folding stock, and outshoots target barrels. That is until you put the factory stock on. Then it shoots miserable groups. But overall, I love that gun, and it’s killed more deer than any other rifle I own.

    For home defense: (accuracy)
    If I grab my Mini 14, you go to hell, you go directly to hell, you do not pass GO, you do not collect $200. You better hope Jesus loves you!

    If I grab my Saiga 12, son, you just made a serious tactical error!

    If I grab my AR-15, you have a good probability of dying.

    If I grab my Type 56 AKM with 75 rnd drum, you have a good sporting chance! 🙂

  8. Ruger has stopped servicing the ac556 and if parts break they are much more expensive now to keep running. Plus magazines are limited to factory ones only since the aftermarket ones don’t work. IMHO the mini14 is way over hyped. You can buy a AR clone for cheaper plus the mags are readily available and there are restrictive state models available for almost all the states including Cali and NY. Optics mounts are better on the AR then the ruger as well

  9. I have wanted a mini since i was like 6 and watching the a-team as a kid. Finally traded an AR 15 i built for one awhile back and damn happy to have picked it up. Although its an old pencil barreled one i love it! Mine came with a folding stock but found a flawless wood one and a ruger flash hider like the ac 556 had. I replaced a few minor parts to make sure it was tip top and runs like a champ. Ever bump fired one? I’ll tell you these things will lay down some lead in a flat hurry, like 30 rounds in about 2 seconds! I know its not great for the rifle but had to see what it can do and ak or sks got nothing on this for bump firing!

  10. I bought my Mini in 1987. Put a vynl camo wrap around for protection. Put a muzzle brake on it. I want to put a barrel stabilizer on it next. I sometime use it for hunting. I love mine.

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